College Council Meeting Minutes June 21, 2023


Darlene Baker (via Zoom)
Richard (Dick) Farfaglia
Tara FitzGibbons
Brian McGrath (via Zoom)
Jim McMahon, Chair (via Zoom)
Christine Patrick
Kristin Shanley-Graves

Brandon Bennett, Director of Student Conduct
Cory Bezek, Vice President for Enrollment Management
Mary Canale, Vice President for University Advancement
Kristi Eck, Chief of Staff and Executive Director of Strategic Initiatives, External Partnerships, and Legislative Affairs
Victoria Furlong, Vice President for Administration and Finance
Christy Huynh, Dean of Students
Jennifer Janes, Oswego Alumni Association
Kathleen Kerr, Vice President for Student Affairs
Peter Nwosu, President-Elect
Elizabeth Schmitt, Professor of Economics, Faculty Assembly Chair
Mary C. Toale, Officer in Charge


Kendra Cadogan, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer
Austin Davis, 2023—2024 Student Association President
Thomas Ehrhard, 2022-2023 Student Association President
Scott Furlong, Provost, Vice President for Academic Affairs


Kristen Eichhorn (Zoom)


  1. Welcome and Call to Order: Dick Farfaglia, on behalf of College Council Chair James McMahon, called the meeting to order in Marano Campus Center Room 114 at 1:03 PM

  2. Approval of Minutes from April 12, 2023 Meeting: Dick Farfaglia asked for a motion to approve the previous meeting’s minutes at 1:03 PM. Kristin Shanley made a motion to approve; Tara FitzGibbons seconded. All were in favor. The minutes of the April 12, 2023 meeting were approved by the Council.

  3. Code of Conduct – Proposed Changes: presented by Kathleen Kerr, Vice President for Student Affairs

    Kathleen Kerr thanked College Council member Kristin Shanley-Graves for her service on the Spring 2023 Code of Conduct Task Force as a co-chair (along with Kathleen Kerr) and for her significant input on and contributions to the revised Code of Conduct. The proposed changes focused on making the Code of Conduct clearer and easier to understand for students.

    The goals of the Code of Conduct revision process included: updating policies so that they more accurately reflect current behavior and community expectations, simplify language and reduce jargon, address procedural gaps and missing information, make the process more efficient/timely, and enhance educational focus and restorative foundation principles.

    The goals of the student conduct process at SUNY Oswego include: promoting self-efficacy, learning and growth; protecting student rights and due process; connecting students to resources; and upholding a nonjudgmental, fair, and restorative process.

    Types of code revisions included: language adjustments (i.e. “College” to “University”); language clarifications (i.e. “advisor”); policy modifications and additions; and expansion of procedures and process descriptions (i.e. appeals process and case resolution).

    Discussion held. Dick Farfaglia asked for a motion at 1:28 PM to approve the changes to the Code of Conduct. Tara FitzGibbons made a motion to approve; Kristin Shanley-Graves seconded. All were in favor. The proposed changes to the Code of Conduct were approved by the Council.

    The revised Code of Conduct, with all accepted changes, will appear in the 2023-2024 SUNY Oswego Student Handbook.

  4. Accessibility: SUNY Oswego Accessibility Resources presented by Christy Huynh, Dean of Students

    SUNY Oswego created a position of Director of Accessibility Resources (current search/open position) to address the increasing caseload of registered students needing services.

    External consultants will be on campus to conduct an external program review on SUNY Oswego’s accessibility this summer (July 18 and 19, 2023). The external reviewers will tour facilities, meet with university stakeholders, and deliver a program review with recommendations on how SUNY Oswego can take action to continue to best address accessibility needs for our campus community.

    The use of Bluetooth technology on campus to help the hearing impaired was also discussed.

    Currently not all laptops or classroom podiums are Bluetooth enabled; however, we do have real-time captioning in Zoom and Panopto always available.

    Faculty are obligated to provide the accommodations that students need (based on accommodations documentation). SUNY Oswego’s Accessibility Fellows also support this effort by helping faculty make their in-person and online classrooms more accessible to all students.

    SUNY Oswego has contracted with a bridge company to provide elevator service to all campus elevators.

  5. Advertising Campaign: Presentation prepared by Rick Buck, Director of Digital Services, and Nick Malchoff, Director of Marketing, presented by Mary Toale, Officer in Charge

    During Fall 2022, SUNY had an “Apply for Free” campaign that resulted in 6,000 applications for SUNY Oswego. SUNY Oswego offered an additional free week with an additional free application week that resulted in 3,000 more applications.

    SUNY Oswego has switched from external contractors to internal creation of video and digital production and marketing to create videos and creative content, including admissions viewbook and content.

    Our marketing efforts, along with the entire campus approach, including the deans, faculty, and staff, and admissions team, of course, have helped increase admissions applications across transfer, new, and graduate students.

    Thus far, an increase in committed graduate students and transfer students for fall 2023, and working on an increase in undergraduate students for fall 2023.

  6. SUNY Oswego mission statement word change of college to university: Mary Toale, Officer in Charge, shared SUNY Oswego is updating the word “college” to “university” in the College Catalog to reflect SUNY Oswego’s new designation as a university.

  7. Alumni Report: Alumna Jennifer Janes presented the report:

    Since the last update to College Council in January, Alumni Engagement brought many events to the alumni and campus communities for the spring semester, including the annual Commencement Eve Dinner and Torchlight Ceremony for graduates and their families. This event officially welcomed those new grads into the Alumni Association, and featured remarks from alum keynote Gabriel Almanzar ’05. We celebrated with 214 attendees at dinner that evening, as well as more than 600 attendees at the ceremony.

    Reunion Weekend 2023 took place June 8 – 11, 2023 – during which we welcomed more than 550 alumni and friends who registered with the university, and hundreds more who were in town to celebrate their affinity group reunions and milestones. The celebration featured 11 anniversary classes and 3 mini-reunion groups celebrating milestone anniversaries.

    Representatives from 61 different class years ranging from 1962 through 2023 attended Reunion. Alumni came from 3 countries (the United States, Canada and the Cayman Islands) and 24 U.S. states.

    Eight outstanding alumni were chosen to receive 2023 Alumni Association Awards – and six of those honorees were recognized during Reunion Weekend. This year’s honorees represented the following award categories: Alumni Impact Award; Community Service Award; Distinguished Alumni Award; GOLD Award; and Lifetime Award of Merit.

    The Alumni Sharing Knowledge (ASK) program continues to serve as a valuable resource for student and recent graduate mentees, as well as a valuable way to give back to the college for alumni volunteers. Between virtual and in-person sessions during the 2022-2023 year, more than 280 alumni volunteered their time to connect with more than 8,000 students. Additionally, during the 2022-2023 year, 100 one-on-one ASK Mentorship connections were completed.

    In addition to these alumni/student engagement opportunities through the ASK Program, we have continued to produce various in-person and virtual events and opportunities for our alumni. During the 2022-2023 year, we hosted and collaborated on 30 non-ASK events of various formats, which have engaged over 4,030 alumni, students, faculty, staff and friends.

    Alumni continue to support Admissions and Enrollment Management efforts. In the spring of 2023, we once again featured 4 alumni as signatories on letters to admitted students from their respective school/college – encouraging them to commit to attending Oswego. We also engaged 4 alumni speakers in several of Admissions’ on-campus Admitted Student Days and Open Houses throughout the month of April 2023, along with continuing to engage successful alumni in marketing campaigns.

    During the spring semester, we launched a revamped and restructured Future Alumni Network program (FANs), to center more on engaging student leaders as a network of ambassadors for exclusive opportunities with alumni and the University Advancement office. Since the relaunch in February, we have 31 active student ambassadors.

    Since the launch of our Oswego Alumni Book Club in February 2021, 423 alumni and SUNY Oswego Community members have joined the book club. We also are continuing to produce our Oswego Alumni Podcast Series – featuring alumni guest speakers each month discussing a variety of topics, and since its launch in May 2020, we have released a total of 21 episodes, produced in partnership with WNYO.

    Jennifer also shared that the Future Alumni Network (FANs) rebranded and relaunched. There are currently 31 active student FAN ambassadors.

  8. Faculty Report: Faculty Assembly Chair Elizabeth Schmitt presented the report. Highlights from report:

    Change in Maximum Transfer Credits: Students have been limited to transferring a maximum of 60 credit hours from two-year institutions. This cap made Oswego more restrictive for transfer credit than most other institutions in the SUNY system. We have lifted that cap but still require, for all students, a minimum of 42 hours of upper division credit, a minimum of 30 hours in residence at Oswego, and at least half of the credits for a major or minor to be completed at Oswego.

    Bylaw Revisions
    Multiple Articles: Provisions for opening restrictions on unfilled council seats
    Article IX: Two year terms for both the FA Chair and Vice-chair, elected in May for terms beginning June 1, and with a three-term limit.
    Editorial changes of “college” to “university” will be made in faculty by-laws.
    Note: Bylaw revisions require approval by two-thirds of the membership of FA, then go on to a simple majority approval in a meeting of the general faculty. These bylaw revisions will be voted on by the voting faculty in September 2023.

    Curriculum Development
    Undergraduate Curriculum Council: 46 new/revised courses Graduate Council: 17 new/revised courses

    Other curricular changes
    Removal of the Western Civilization category as of Fall 2023 to be consistent with the SUNY General Education Requirements
    Requiring GST 104 Experiential Learning in College (1 credit) for all non-transfer students entering SUNY Oswego beginning Fall 2024

    New Programs
    Actuarial Studies Minor
    Health Promotion and Behavioral Wellness MS

  9. Student Association Report: No report

  10. Campus Update: Presentation by Officer in Charge Mary Toale
    A. Budget
    B. Enrollment
    C. Institutional Priorities
    D. SUNY Oswego Recommendations for Action 2022-2023 E. Enhanced Marketing
    F. Campus Initiatives
    G. Capital Updates
    H. Commencement

    $53 Million from New York State budget allocated to SUNY enabled SUNY Oswego to search for four full-time faculty (assistant professor level) in high-need areas.

    Our current baseline is 7,000 students with the goal of rebuilding to 7,500 over the next few years.

    We need to increase our retention rate to achieve our overall enrollment goals. Cory Bezek: Nationally there has been a decline in retention rates and SUNY institutions are above the national average, including SUNY Oswego

    This fall we are going to have embedded tutors in the class session to help students in real-time.

    We are going to increase our high impact practice opportunities for students to meet the goals set by the Chancellor. We have a history of doing this. Ex. The Rich & Pour Cafe in Rich Hall (all student-run).

    We have changed our financial aid offers to make them clearer and straightforward and easier for all to understand.

    We are messaging to prospective and to admitted students that Oswego, NY can be reached by car, train, bus, or plane and we are explaining the easy ways to access the campus from each of these options.

    We are also now offering Orientation in New York City to make it easier for students to participate.

    Over the last year and looking ahead to fall 2023, we are seeing an increase in the number of students who want to live in campus residence halls, including an increase in upper-class students wanting to live on campus.

    Institutional Priorities
    Discussion held on the following priorities:

1. Student Success
2. Academic and Creative Excellence 3. Inclusive Community
4. Sustainable Institution
5. Partnerships

Recommendations for Actions

  1. Student Success

    a. Continue to advance a campus culture of care b. Sustain an 80% retention rate
    c. Eliminate achievement gaps
    d. Increase financial literacy

  2. Academic and Creative Excellence
    a. Increase high quality high impact practices inside and outside of the classroom b. Continue to innovate our curriculum/academic programs
    c. Increase collaborations and partnerships

  3. Inclusive Community
    a. Continue to nurture an intentional and vital culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion across all aspects of the university
    b. Continue to work toward restorative and racial justice
    c. Identify, understand, and address reasons contributing to achievement gaps
    d. Continue focus on increasing the recruitment and retention of diverse faculty, staff, and administrators
    e. Continue to build upon our commitment to an environment in which everyone feels welcomed, respected, and valued

  4. Sustainable Institution
    a. Fiscally

    i. Continue campus-wide focus on recruitment, enrollment, and retention

    ii. Create a strategic enrollment management plan iii. Develop a strategic long-term financial plan

    b. Environmentally
              i. Continue to reduce our carbon footprint
              ii. Prepare to earn Sustainability, Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System (STARS) Gold rating from AASHE
  5. Partnerships
    a. Elevate and grow mutually beneficial partnerships
    b. Enhance and increase alumni partnerships
    c. Position SUNY Oswego as a regional partnership hub

Enhanced Marketing
Discussion held on marketing efforts for SUNY Oswego.

Campus Initiatives
Discussion on the following campus initiatives:

1. SUNY Oswego now university
2. Middle States Supplemental Information Report submitted
3. Integrative Professional Studies (BA/BS)
4. Higher Education Leadership (MS)
5. Behavioral Health (MS)
6. 70%+ increase in external grant dollars
7. SSEI: Credit completion, belongness, financial literacy
8. Title III grant proposal
9. New AAC&U Initiative on Curriculum-to-Career Innovations Institute will begin in 
10. University Wide Integrated Marketing and Communication
11. Inclusive Practices: LGBTQIA+ Working Group
12. Student Code of Conduct Revision task force
13. Empire State Development grant: Instructor Bootcamp
14. Oswego County Micron Strategy Steering Committee
15. Campus Community Relations Committee Photo Essay Project
16. Rich and Pour Café launch
17. Oz Inclusivity Playbook
18. Campus Accessibility assessment
19. Vice President for Enrollment Management
20. Scholarship Review task force
21. President’s Student Advisory Board for Inclusive Excellence (SABIE)
22. Partnership with Oswego County Town Fire Department
23. Electric Vehicle charging station needs analysis and conceptual plan preparation
24. Campus Wide Print Initiative (ongoing
25. Earned Sustainability, Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System (STARS) Gold rating from AASHE

Capital Updates
Discussion held on the following Capital Updates:

1. Concept Development
a. Tyler Hall Phase III: $5.5m
b. Penfield Lanigan Connector: $76.0m
i. Penfield Library and Resource Center
ii. Lanigan Hall Rehab
c. Student Life Facility: $30.0m
d. Sheldon Hall East Wing Rehab: $32.0m
2. Design Activity

  1. Mahar Hall Rehab: $60.5m
    i. Comprehensive Rehabilitation

  2. Hewitt Quad (including Geothermal): $5m

  3. Critical Maintenance

    i. Emergency Generators: $2.5m ii. Laker and Wilber Roofs: $6.1m

    iii. HVAC: $3.4m

    iv. Campuswide Elevator Renewals. $1.0m

3. Construction Activity

a. Hewitt Hall Phase I (Exterior): $18m b. Hewitt Hall Phase II (Interior): $42.5m c. Sheldon Terracotta: $14m
d. Hart Hall Upgrades: $1.3m
e. Bookville Relocation: $0.3m
f. Rudolph Road Steam Line: $5m

4. Planning
a. Campus wide Energy Master Plan

i. 100% Renewable Energy by 2035 ii. Net Zero Carbon Footprint

b. Academic Facilities & Residential Housing Master Plan c. Student Engagement Space Assessment

Discussion held on Commencement and speakers
1. 9:00am – College of Liberal Arts and Sciences – Dr. Juhanna Rogers
2. 12:30pm – School of Business – Hon. Billy Barlow
3. 4:00pm – School of Communications, Media and the Arts; School of Education – Dr. Robert Simmons

New York State FY24 budget highlights for SUNY: No tuition increase for in-state undergraduate students. 3% increase for out-of-state graduate students ONLY. Increased levels of capital investment – we are ready to move on capital projects. $650m for critical maintenance not enough to address our needs but we appreciate the increase of $100m over last year’s $550m.

SUNY Oswego continues to prepare for Micron and to collaborate and engage with Micron leadership and align our curriculum to ensure we will have graduates ready for opportunities.

Strategic Enrollment Management Plan development underway.

Strategic long-term financial plan development underway. Budget toolkits built to help divisions and departments understand the budget better.

Sustainable commitment remains a priority. Gold rating received from AASHE.

AAC&U Curriculum-to-Career Innovations Institute will start this August – will help students better understand how their major aligns with their career goals.

President’s Student Advisory Board for Inclusive Excellence (new) – students will be able to have regular meetings with the president to address matters as they come up and not after the fact.

Oswego County Town Fire Department is working with SUNY Oswego to help address the increase in fire alarms.

Inaugural year of having students serve on the Oswego College Foundation committees. Next step might be to have a student serve on the Oswego College Foundation Board.

Electric vehicle need assessment (for charging stations) will be done on campus soon.

Penfield Lanigan Connector design plans are advancing. Lanigan Hall renovation plans are advancing too.

Perhaps Sheldon Hall becomes a welcome center – we are in a concept phase now.

Discussion on making Laker Hall improvements so the building is more accessible to the public and modernized to meet the needs of our students and community partners who use the space. Mary Toale shared that we want to continue to make improvements but academic building needs come first. We are taking action to address the need to improve the locker rooms in Laker Hall.

11. Old Business (Dick Farfaglia): None

New Business (Dick Farfaglia and Brian McGrath): Presidential Transition Committee:

All invitations will be made to the Presidential Transition Committee members by the end of the week. The first meeting will be the week of July 3, 2023 and will meet each week through July and into August.

The Committee will include 12 people and also subcommittee members totaling close to 30.

The mission will include preparing to welcome Dr. Nwosu to SUNY Oswego and helping with connections to key internal and external stakeholders.

Q: From Tara FitzGibbons: How are we covering the Office of Communications and Marketing now that Wayne Westervelt (previous Chief Communication Officer) has accepted a new position at another institution?

A: Kristi Eck will oversee News & Events and the Design & Print areas in the interim and Rick Buck will oversee the Marketing area until a new Vice President for Communication and Marketing is hired. A search is underway for that position.

Jim McMahon asked for a motion (at 3:47 PM) to offer a resolution in recognition of Officer in Charge Dr. Mary Toale’s leadership to SUNY Oswego from January 2022 - present; Brian McGrath seconded the motion; All were in favor.

College Council Chair James McMahon asked to call the meeting to end at 3:49 PM. All were in favor and the meeting adjourned at 3:49 PM.